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Messages - Khergit Kabob

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The Last Days / Re: TLD 3.23 coldfix
« on: August 09, 2013, 11:49:59 PM »
Awesome! You're the best!

The Last Days / Re: Morale System Feedback and Suggestions
« on: January 26, 2013, 05:52:07 PM »
Dim's special tree
I have to admit to having other things on my mind ... do any of the other companions like / dislike Dim, and does he like or dislike anyone?

The Last Days / Re: Victory posts / Beating the game
« on: January 25, 2013, 09:44:00 AM »
@Historix: Mork and Mindy for the "In TVLand Pop Culture Never Dies" win ...

@Everyone Else:

If the Legions came pouring out of either Morannon or MM in response to the first siege it would guarantee an epic massive orc wave beatdown. It would be a kind of final challenge to the player: how good do you think you are? You can still win the game if you can't beat a 4-legion stack of trouble, but saving the poor fools who were first to siege one of the Gates is where you earn your bragging rights.

Heh, someone called it "The Back Gate". I can imagine some unfortunate civil engineer labeling it that and an angry evil overlord walking past and saying, "Back Gate? Leading down a primrose path to a hummingbird feeder, maybe some garden gnomes? This towering structure is the the gateway to Balad Dur! It's supposed to exude menace, not middle class. FIX IT NOW!"
While he's yelling the engineer quickly slips an "l" in between the "B" and "a".

"Hmm? Oh, The Black Gate. Yeah, that's more like it!"

The relieved engineer quickly orders all maps be "updated" so that every map captured from the orcs seems to have has an "l" kind of scrawled and screwy. Drives the Gondor intelligence analysts mad trying to figure out what it means ...

The Last Days / Re: Morale System Feedback and Suggestions
« on: January 19, 2013, 09:10:49 AM »
Ovaries, and she's a medic so it seems in-character. She even warns you that she needs protection when you hire her.

Face-man always retreating is either out-of-character or he's intentionally been made into a "bad hire" like Dimbulb. (Dim's level is way too high for his low skills IIRC.)

The Last Days / Re: Spawning dynamics
« on: January 19, 2013, 09:05:42 AM »
If possible, that count of eliminated parties should increase with every party of the targeted kind OR STRONGER.

Edit: Also, and this is a real bug, "eliminate enemy party" quests don't clean up after the target faction is eliminated. The quest should either re-cast to the next enemy faction or cancel.
Added to my to-do list. :)

The Last Days / Re: Open betas for the next patch (3.2 is out)
« on: January 19, 2013, 09:03:16 AM »
It's in-character. Think about it: you're a Duke or King and one of your generals is asking you for orders. That's not abnormal, even with a city under siege.
Demanding that the siege be broken at all cost is about the only normal thing a competent Duke or King would say to a general in that situation, unless the city is so far gone it would be a waste of good men to try to save it. A message delivery quest to a general either enroute or in combat with besieging forces would also be in-character, especially if the text reflected it: "He may already be engaged with besieging forces. Assist him in any way possible: this message is urgent!" Talk about a crap mission: siege-lifting duties on message delivery prices! Heh, that's a good kind of "crap mission" though. Blood and death everywhere, your exhausted men nursing wounds and tending the wounded, and you crawl up to Captain Faramir with the words, "Message for you, sir!" Straight outta Python, amiright?
(You'd still get the standard "saved a general's bacon" rank and influence, so the player isn't really getting ripped off, just under-appreciated.)

An incompetent, like Denethor, might say something like, "Our stores of Longbottom Leaf are getting low. Go and fetch me some more. Don't worry about the siege of Pelargir. If those men can't hold the walls they deserve what they get." (A line lifted from the actual source text -- which I still haven't read -- would of course be preferable.)

The Last Days / Re: Open betas for the next patch (3.2 is out)
« on: January 16, 2013, 10:23:59 PM »
Having non-combat tasks for players to immerse themselves in is a good idea, but there should I think be an awareness of cities under siege -- and a quest for lifting the siege. You might even lock out all other quests until "Lift the Siege" is finished, not for any gameplay purpose but just for immersion.

"Until the siege of Westfold is lifted I don't want my generals getting distracted. You want to help, go save Westfold!" Heh, no messenger duties for you while the cities are burning. Priorities, man, priorities ...

Steward Denethor might be incompetent enough he intentionally orders the crappiest missions possible when he's got a city under siege. Heh, that jerk.

The Last Days / Re: Morale System Feedback and Suggestions
« on: January 13, 2013, 07:53:35 AM »
I used to hate the morale system, mostly because your troops would run without even fighting and there was nothing you could do about it, but adding in the "Rally the Troops" command has turned it from bad to good. Now you have a shot at keeping your army together even when outnumbered, which if you're fighting for the good guys is almost every battle until the Northern forces move south.

The sheer number of fights you'll have to go through before completing the game risks the boredom of sameness. Having orcs retreat and having to develop tactics for dealing with that break the game up a little bit. If it weren't for retreating orcs I'd probably never get off the horse. As long as the orcs charge blindly toward my resupply crate why not just keep resupplying and shooting them? I can ride back for reloads and they'll be that much closer to my ammo supply when I ride back out again. But if they're retreating there's no hitting the ammo crate; you scrounge arrows, you melee, you ride to the invisible wall and take the fight to the ground, you get to have some fun. When new waves of orcs appear they'll often do so right on top of a group that's retreating. That also kind of feels right, like the guys in front have had enough and they're running one way while the new guys are charging forward (or, seeing the disaster they've been thrown into, immediately start running themselves.)

The alternative is not very interesting. Imagine how boring a zombie movie would be if humans outnumbered zombies. Without morale outnumbered orcs just shamble into your defenses and get cut down battle after battle. With retreating orcs covered by trolls a player is forced to use tactics and maneuvers even when the enemy is outnumbered. I think this is a good thing.

Finally consider the dramatic arc from the gamer's perspective. The essence of a good battle is for the part where you're outnumbered to be very dramatic and the part where you mop up after turning the tide to be over very, very fast. Morale should thread the needle: your guys shouldn't retreat too soon, and their guys shouldn't drag out a battle you've already more-or-less won. If they start running then the clock is ticking.

I think the way the morale system is tuned now is actually pretty good. I'd like for routed forces in a battle won by their side to rejoin their army -- immediately, so they're available in that series of battles -- but I'm not hung up about it or anything. The morale system is fine like it is.

The Last Days / Re: Victory posts / Beating the game
« on: January 13, 2013, 07:02:01 AM »
You can always tell the Morkwood archers from their battle cry, "Nanu Nanu!"


The Last Days / Re: Open betas for the next patch (3.2 is out)
« on: January 10, 2013, 04:07:33 AM »
I always thought of my character as one of those generals who seems to always make things happen, a Napoleon (I guess if you're evil since he was a bad guy) or for the good team ... hmm ... how about Lennart Torstensson?

Almost nobody knows who Lennart is, so that fits pretty well with who your character is. Gandalf probably has a list of like 12 dozen commanders he gives the, "The Whole World is Riding on Your Shoulders!" speech to, but we don't really do it for the accolades but because we don't fit in polite society or anywhere else but the battlefield, right? (My latest general got a taste of "civilian life" waiting for months for King Thranduil to besiege the last evil camp. We started out rich and strong and ended up poor, weak, and bored out of our minds.)

There are in fact a bunch of unsung generals who had what Rommel called "Fingerspitzengef├╝hl". Lennart was one of the more important ones to Western civilization.

Is that what the player should be? If you were going to shorten the autocalc clock it might be entertaining to do it only with a certain rival general, and they could be like Napoleon vs. Wellington (or Nelson if you're really honest). Whenever you meet this guy he'd recognize you as special, as his rival; he'd be all like,
"So, Chippen of Dale, we meet again!", or
"Chippen, my old friend. At last I am tested by a worthy opponent!"
Hah, that would be hilarious.

It's probably not in character relative to the source material, but it would be pretty funny. If you were a female general your evil counterpart would have to be as well. Their snide commentary would be almost as legendary as their actual battles.
"From the stableboys' rumors you command your horsemen from above the saddle and your horses from below ..."
Hah, yeah, things could get pretty vicious out there before the fighting starts ... I can't really imagine two female generals being cordial enemies of the "So, we meet again," school, like if Joan of Arc and Catherine the Great were somehow to find themselves on opposite sides they'd hate each other. From either general's point-of-view as long as your rival is also a female general there's nothing special about you. That would drive anyone crazy. I guess unless you lived in a society where female generals weren't special in the first place, but that's not the case, is it?

Edit: German, corrected. Thanks, Dragonknight!

The Last Days / Re: Morale System Feedback and Suggestions
« on: January 10, 2013, 03:16:15 AM »
It's kind of surprising to see a line of 10 trolls fleeing in terror; on the other hand nobody covers a retreat quite like a line of trolls. You chase down a retreating enemy with cavalry, right? Umm ... about that ...

So the safest way to fight retreating orcs with no trolls in the way is for me to be a dragoon, to ride to the invisible wall then get off the horse for the actual fighting, while the cavalry runs down anyone who hasn't made it to the wall and the infantry and archers plod along to eventually mop things up if me and the cav take too long.
Horses are a liability once they hit the invisible wall, and I've seen cavalry get hacked to pieces by "retreating" orcs. If I can get in front of them I can be the "goalie" to the cavalry's polo team. Any orcs that make it to the net have to deal with me. Riders will still hit the wall, but at least they won't get chopped while they regain control.

But if the retreat is covered by a line of trolls ... a goalie not paying attention can easily become the puck. Once the trolls get to the invisible wall they'll make a mess of anything you throw at them that isn't a missile. Watching Lord Bard getting his Merchant Guards slaughtered is always sobering. Nothing worse than a retreating troll.

The Last Days / Re: Combat Damage Model (RCM) - merged threads
« on: January 09, 2013, 11:39:23 PM »
Does RCM seriously account for things like facemasks with real hitboxes, or does it simply offer a chance like a % chance that a helmet's protection is completely bypassed?

The Last Days / Re: Morale System Feedback and Suggestions
« on: January 09, 2013, 11:28:42 PM »
Orcs are more dangerous in retreat than on attack.

I also think routed allies should rally immediately after winning a round, like if 6 guys rout but you win the round anyway those guys should be returned to you and ready to fight in the next round. (The same goes for enemies, although realistically I doubt any player could ever lose to a retreating enemy.)

It's frustrating to have high-quality troops retreat and be removed from the game as if they had died just because we're outnumbered by low-quality scrubs. I don't expect the AI to read the tactical situation with any sophistication, just if I win let me have my guys back. It's not a big deal, just a minor frustration.

The Last Days / Re: Open betas for the next patch (3.2 is out)
« on: January 09, 2013, 11:21:26 PM »
Something needs to break the drudgery of the end-game.

Heh, if the Legions spawned twice, the first time in the North right at the beginning, that would give 'em something to think about, wouldn't it? Gondor and Rohan are both ganked pretty hard in the beginning already, but if the North got goosed maybe a Beorning or Dale city might actually get sacked for once.

The fight in the North would retain its basic character if the Legions didn't take them too far off-balance: "North wins first then saves the South" is the only way South has a chance. (Barring player intervention, of course: any nation that has you fighting for it is going to do shockingly well.)

Later, as Mordor is about to fall, the Legions could spawn again, only the generals would be ordered to "fight to the death" -- they'd be scripted to always die when defeated.

That would make 2 sets of Legions more dramatic and give you something interesting to see after you've seen it all: a field of carnage littered with the barrows of fallen enemy generals. Two sets of Legions, rather than being redundant, become a beginning and an end. Just a thought.

The Last Days / Re: Victory posts / Beating the game
« on: January 09, 2013, 02:18:51 AM »
I just won a game where we Forces of Good descended on Mordor so swiftly and completely they spawned their "Last Stand Legions" after they had been otherwise completely wiped out.

Chasing down the Legions was more like an Epilogue, especially since it took King Thranduil so long to finally make his move on Haradrim Camp, last evil camp standing, that my army had fallen apart by the time I fought the Legions. I couldn't keep an 80+ man army happy with no combat month after month and I couldn't keep them paid, either. I started losing troops after about a week.

My armies started being stripped off, faction by faction, starting with the dwarves, and before it was done I even used up all my Rohanbucks, so there goes my cavalry. In the end I'm chasing down the Legions -- after the game is over and Mordor is defeated -- with an army of scrubs. I still had enough Gondorbucks to keep a few Knights around, some hard-bitten guys from back in the day y'know, the good old days. I can imagine my rag-tag militia talking about how I used to command a huge and powerful force of elite soldiers "back when the war was actually a war".

It's kind of poignant in its own way, like Jon Snow hearing tales of Giants and White Walkers beyond The Wall from the old men of the Night's Watch. Except instead of being Jon Snow I'm the Old Man.

"Yeah, I remember back when we were outnumbered 3-to-1 ... our horsemen were harrying them pretty good until the troll showed up."

"Wait, you were outnumbered? By orcs? How is that even possible?"

"It was a different time, kid. You'd have to be there to understand."

Of course if we took on the Legions by ourselves instead of drawing them into the thousands-strong armies of our allies we could re-create the battles of yore ... (just to be clear, the Legions themselves are nothing to sneeze at, it's just when you've got thousands and they've got hundreds the writing is on the wall ...)

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